01 March 2006

West Virginia news

I suppose the big horse racing news in West Virginia is a bill to reorganize the West Virginia Racing Commission, but I was more interested in the introduction of races for state-breds at Mountaineer:

The proposed reorganization of the racing commission is attached to state code that governs the West Virginia Thoroughbred Development Fund. Charles Town has long offered West Virginia-bred races, but beginning this year, Mountaineer will offer races for state-breds. To help kick-start the program, there are award provisions for "raisers" -- owners of yearlings (regardless of where they were foaled) at the time they finish 12 consecutive months of verifiable residence in the state.(Blood-horse)

Better news is that Mountaineer has posted its stakes schedule for 2006. It includes 4 one mile turf races for fillies and mares - the length, distance, and surface that Lady Grace seems to like the best. Regular readers know how fond I am of this "8 yo dk b or b m." But apparently, I'm not the only one. The Mountaineer Park Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association named Lady Grace its "2005 Horse of the Year".

A recent comment here noted that a "high number of well-bred rejects that show up" at Mountaineer, and Lady Grace is just one example - her sire is With Approval, 1989 Canadian Horse of the Year.

You knew I'd get back to Canada during the Canadians' Freedom to Read Week, didn't you?


excellerandferdinand said...

Be nice to see the King of Waterford, DALE BAIRD, start breeding state-breds. He goes as far as California to buy runners; spent a wad recently at Barretts.

Fri nite pick: DANIELTOWN, another heavy hitter from Stonerside, is at MNR, race 8. SW at the track last year, this earner of $487k is making his '06 debut, off a November layoff. Major rival, RAVING ROCKET, is also coming off July05 layoff[?], shipping in from Chicago for Larry Rivelli.

excellerandferdinand said...

Well, Fri nite was an abbreviated one, as MNR cancelled after the fourth due to track condtions. A horse to watch: MAJOR STRIKE, a 3yo gelding, (Gulch x Vice Regent) recently purchased by Dale Baird at Barretts in California. Originally sold for princely sum of $220,000, he made three starts in 'Frisco area, including being pulled up in second life start at Bay Meadows. Connections dumped him; Baird took him for $22,000, exactly ten per cent of his baby selling price. Obviously has problems; I look for this one to eventually wind up on the bottom claiming rungs if Baird can't make it work. Another Baird purchase,WILD MEETING, is listed to go at MNR on Sunday nite. He gave $50,000 for this one, a 5yo bay filly by General Meeting, at Barretts, June 2004 sale.

QQ said...

Thanks for the alerts! I had money on DANIELTOWN on WV Derby day when as the favorite in the Chairman's Cup Stakes, he threw his rider at the gate.

Anyway, I'll be watching for WILD MEETING, though it seems that the Baird horses always have the lowest odds.

excellerandferdinand said...

Baird has bought sooooo many horses at the Calif. auctions, most are works-in-progress, to be kind. Sunday nite, WILD MEETING, won for fun. Baird paid a whopping $50,000 for her; he dropped her in for $30k, assuming, rightly, that no one (other than him) had the cash to dip in and take her. Another of his buys, METHUEN, by Capote, showed some early foot before backing up. This one may prove to be one of his best purchases from the Left Coast; denting his wallet by a mere $2,200. Mountaineer is a continually fascinating venue. Also, Saturday nite, Ozzie Perreira and trainer Don MacRae shipped over to Charles Town with MR. NINER, a sprint specialist. A ground-saving ride by Oz resulted in a driving score. For a jock who does not venture to bullrings, it was an impressive piece of raceriding as he made a very tight turn into the stretch, lapping on the two horses to his immediate inside. Had he blown the turn, even his mount's natural speed would not have saved him, given the short stretch run. Masterful. Perreira continues to be the hottest jock in the colony at MNR.